headlines | about |

murphblog: Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Eastern Parkway is back to its usual calm decrepitude the morning after Carnival and I sit, as usual, on a bench drinking my Dunkin' Donuts coffee and maybe eat a bagel. No overripe women dancing in scanty feathered costumes or gangbangers, just the usual Jewish women jogging in their long skirts, wigs and iPods; Spanish men walking beautifully groomed dogs; a few of the usual leftover drunks.

The pizza joint I go to was playing the theme from Goldfinger as I munched and I thought to myself: Shirley Bassey pretty much provided the soundtrack to my puberty. I feel sorry for kids today.

Not much else to write so I'll post a couple of interesting links I found:

Joan Didion eulogizes the "vanished America" of the 1988 Presidential campaign in the New York Review of Books and it reads eerily like her "Year of Magical Thinking," about the aftermath of the death of her husband. Every line Didion writes is meant to be a quotable sound bite but here's one paragraph about George I and charisma:

That George Bush might have
thrived in Texas not in spite of
but precisely because he was a
member of the north-eastern
elite was a shading which had no
part in the narrative: "He was
considered back at the time one
of the most charismatic people
ever elected to public office in
the history of Texas,"
Congressman Bill Archer of
Houston has said. "That
charisma, people talked about it
over and over again." People
talked about it, probably,
because Andover and Yale and the
inheritable tax avoidance they
suggested were, during the years
George Bush lived in Texas, the
exact ideals toward which the
Houston and Dallas establishment
aspired, but the narrative
called for a less ambiguous
version: "Lived in a little
shotgun house, one room for the
three of us," as Bush, or Peggy
Noonan, had put it in the
celebrated no-subject-pronoun
cadences of the "lived the
dream" acceptance speech.
"Worked in the oil business,
started my own…. Moved from the
shotgun to a duplex apartment to
a house. Lived the dream—high
school football on Friday night,
Little League, neighborhood
barbecue…pushing into unknown
territory with kids and a dog
and a car…."

The Observer makes a handy list of the best art videos on youtube: